Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari urged the developed countries on Monday to step up their climate efforts, including the provision of predictable climate finance for mitigating the adverse impacts of the phenomenon in the developing world.
Talking to a US Congressional delegation, led by Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, the foreign minister underlined that despite being one of the lowest emitters of carbon emissions, Pakistan was the most impacted by the climate change.
“Pakistan is neither the first, nor the last country to face a climate catastrophe,” the foreign minister told the delegation. He underscored the need for engaging on a common climate agenda and called for climate justice at the global level.
Bilawal appreciated the visit of delegation – which also included Congressman Thomas Souzzi and Congressman Al Green. He said that visit form 4-6 September came at a time when super floods had ravaged Pakistan.
In the floods of historic proportions, Bilawal said, more than 1,300 lives had been lost; over 33 million people affected; over 4 million acres of crops washed away; and close to a million livestock perished.
“Currently, the government is fully engaged in the rescue and relief efforts,” he said, emphasising that rehabilitation of the millions of affected people and reconstruction of critical infrastructure required enormous resources which was a huge challenge.
The foreign minister hoped that the international community would recognise the enormity of the challenge faced by Pakistan and assist the government in its rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts.
Congresswoman Lee underscored that she was over whelmed by the devastation caused by floods and maintained that her delegation, having assessed the on-ground situation, would support efforts of the US Congress and the US Administration to assist Pakistan.